Puerto Rico Senate president: Vázquez is governor because of me
Declines to answer whether she has his party’s support
SAN JUAN – Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz said Thursday that Wanda Vázquez Garced became governor thanks to his actions.
“We are not going to ask anything of her. She holds the position because I enforced the Constitution,” the Senate leader said at a press conference.
When asked, as the ruling New Progressive Party’s acting president, whether the newly sworn governor had the party’s support, Rivera Schatz said, “Wanda Vázquez got there by constitutional provision, not because of anyone’s support.”
Rivera Schatz insisted that he has not asked Vázquez to name Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González, who he has said should be in power, as the secretary of the State to eventually become governor.
The lawmaker, along with House Speaker Carlos “Johnny” Méndez and González later went to the La Fortaleza governor’s mansion to meet with Vázquez.
The three had earlier held a meeting in the Capitol with the Legislative Conference and 28 of the 33 ruling New Progressive Party mayors, where they discussed the issue the latter face in relation to federal funds, which have ground to a halt given the lack of credibility resulting from the government leadership crisis, the indictment of former officials and the scandal involving the governor’s leaked private messages with advisers and cabinet members.
“I am willing to work for Puerto Rico; the resident commissioner, the House speaker, lawmakers and mayors are willing to work for Puerto Rico,” Rivera Schatz said.
When pressed if he was going to work with her, the lawmaker replied, “Why the insistence in singling out one figure? I don’t understand it. If we are saying that we as the government of Puerto Rico are responding, we will each do what we have to do, is that too difficult to understand?”
—CB’s María Miranda and CyberNews contributed to this report.